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LI Sound: New song from Hicksville indie rockers Persona gets personal about living on LI

Hicksville's Persona is singer Tom Spartinos, guitarist Costas

Hicksville's Persona is singer Tom Spartinos, guitarist Costas Themistocleous, bassist Sam Trestman, and drummer CJ Kostaras. Credit: Zin Records/Nick Zinnanti

Persona’s personal song “Not That Bad” (Persona) isn’t just the Hicksville band’s new single, it’s the start of a conversation.

“We’ve gotten a lot of messages and a lot of comments about it from people who relate to it,” says Persona guitarist Costas Themistocleous.  “Especially when people get a little personal about it and say what it meant to them. That is always cool.”

“Not That Bad” reflects both how the indie-rock quartet has been feeling and what it sees around them. “It’s not easy living on Long Island — there’s the opiod epidemic, the costs of being here,” Themistocleous says. “Mental health is a serious thing. Everybody handles things differently. But it seems like it’s been more spoken about. People ask, ‘How are you really feeling?’”

The single is Persona’s way of kicking off 2019 and sets up a tour that includes East Coast dates and shows in Canada. When the band returns, it will focus on recording a new EP, the follow-up to 2013’s “Mayday, We Crashed.”

Themistocleous says the band is working on plenty of songs, many of which reflect the same raw emotional depth of “Not That Bad.”

“It’s not really hard to be honest,” he says. “It’s a way to let our emotions out. Then, when people hear it, it takes on a life of its own. It’s interpreted by the listener. They bring their own experiences to it. That’s why music for me is therapeutic.”

Persona plays 89 North, 89 N. Ocean Ave., Patchogue, 631-730-8992, at 3 p.m. on March 24. Tickets are $10 through TicketWeb, 866-468-3399,

EZI remakes 'Top Gun' classic

Great Neck-raised EZI was so inspired by her trip to Germany to work on new music that she ended up with an unexpected new single, a cover of the “Top Gun” classic “Take My Breath Away” (5Towns). “I always wanted to flip a classic song that's so different from my sound and make it my own,” the “Dancing in a Room” singer said in a statement. “It was my first time in Berlin and I was so swept off my feet by the city so I felt like the message of the song and the fact that it was originally released by Berlin made me recreating ‘Take My Breath Away’ feel so right. This track also gives my fans a taste of where I'll be going sonically in my next project."

Contact The Long Island Sound at or follow @ndmusic on Twitter.

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